View Full Version : Is anyone using iListen for the Macintosh?
06-29-2003, 08:58 AM
I am a C2/3 quad, so I need to completely control the computer from voice. (I'm working on using a mouse, but it's still very difficult.)
I've been using Dragon NaturallySpeaking since my injury. I'd love to be able to switch back to Macintosh, but I'm concerned about the voice-recognition capabilities. Judging from the iListen (http://www.macspeech.com/) web site, it looks like this product has come a long ways. Any comments?
I am not familiar with Mac's or iListen. I will try to find you some answers with regards to voice recognition and Macs. I am aware (I also use Dragon 7.0) that the Pentium is optimized for voice recognition and Windows XP seems to be designed for voice input. You may want to consider purchasing a program called Knowbrainer that some of our members are using. I do not at this time use Knowbrainer but I believe the software costs $100 and Lunis claims that you can use your PC hands free. Some of our members may have other suggestions.
You may want to read the topic "Do you type or use VR software?"
click here (http://carecure.org/forum/showthread.php?t=12446)
06-30-2003, 04:25 PM
I've been using Dragon NaturallySpeaking for over a year now without a mouse and I pretty much can do anything I want with it, although some tasks, such as photo editing, are very difficult if not impossible. I have looked at the KnowBrainer web site and it looks like a good product. I'm just wondering if it will really increase my productivity.
As far as the Macintosh goes, I'll probably wait awhile. It would still be interesting to get some feedback on VR for the Mac. I'd love to be able to try out OS X - I missed out on it because of my injury.
I did contact Lunis about the Mac and voice recognition. I believe that Lunis is extremely knowledgeable about voice rec. and what it can and cannot do. I have talked with him on the telephone several times, and I have found him to be informative and helpful. I also want to make clear that Lunis has not given me anything, and I plan on purchasing the ANC 600 headset from him this week. Below is what he wrote to me in an e-mail about your question, and you can judge for yourself if this makes sense or not.
The Macintosh computer simply cannot be used for speech-recognition software. NaturallySpeaking is simply way ahead of the pack and in case you haven't heard, the rest of the pack has been pretty much discontinued. Although VoiceXpress is still sold its an L & H product that performed so badly the company (now defunct) was forced to purchase Dragon Systems. ViaVoice has quietly decided to throw in the towel by supposedly selling their distribution rights to ScanSoft. IBM cannot sell ViaVoice outright to ScanSoft because that would entail giving ScanSoft an illegal monopoly; but that's what has been done. There have been plans to port NaturallySpeaking over to the Macintosh computer for years but it has never panned out. There's no serious effort being made for the Macintosh computer because there simply isn't enough customer base. The Macintosh is only popular with musicians and artists (semi popular in the school system) but the PC owns the business world
07-01-2003, 12:40 AM
Here are some reviews of iListen:
This is a somewhat older review from 2000.
This is from June 2, 2003.
Amazon's user comments are generally positive
An interesting use of iListen: transcribing dictation.
Very interesting demonstration of the program and how accurate it can be.
There is a multi-lingual version for Italian, French, Spanish, German, etc.
Some people have complained that iListen uses Applescript for its commands and many people don't know how to program Applescript. Commandsets provides many of these commands for specific applications
Viavoice contain over 500 commands built in, however.
This is a review of version 1.5
07-01-2003, 05:28 AM
Thanks for the info!
Thanks for your research! I appreciate the comments from Linus, however the people from MacSpeech (publishers of iListen) may disagree. It may not be quite up to the level of Dragon NaturallySpeaking, but they are catching up, especially with the latest version. If I ever get a chance to try this out, I'll make sure to relate my experience.
I look forward to your response after you have used MacSpeech for voice recognition. By the way, I think you are doing a pretty good job with Dragon!
07-03-2003, 11:30 PM
The latest issue (August 2003) of MacWorld has a review of iListen and its utility as a transcription device. It is not yet on the http://www.macworld.com web site. The review pointed out that the standard iListen package comes with an iMic (a USB Audio Interface for $40 by http://www.griffintechnology.com ). This interface apparently improves the quality of the microphone input significantly (no matter which microphone you use). So, if you get iListen, you should get the package that has the iMic.